U.S. Africa Command has released airstrike video highlighting the impact of the airstrikes conducted on Dec. 10 that killed eight (8) al-Shabaab explosives experts in the vicinity of Jilib, Somalia.
“Al-Shabaab’s continuous attacks demonstrate its willingness to accept high numbers of civilian casualties while advancing operations aimed at undermining security across Somalia,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Kirk Smith, deputy commander, U.S. Africa Command. “The removal of terrorists involved in the making of explosives helps disrupt al-Shabaab’s ability to conduct attacks of this nature and reduces the group’s ability to target Somali civilians, security forces, government officials, as well as U.S. and Western interests in the country.”
The command’s initial assessment indicates that the strikes killed eight (8) terrorists who were known to play important roles in producing explosives for al-Shabaab, to include vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs). These devices are used frequently by al-Shabaab to target innocent civilians. Al-Shabaab’s attacks over the past several years demonstrate the terrorist organization’s willingness to accept high numbers of civilian causalities.
U.S. Africa Command remains committed to working with Somali partners to disrupt al-Shabaab operations and enhance regional security.
“This strike should demonstrate to any enemy that we stand by our partners and will vigorously defend both ourselves and our partners,” said Maj. Gen. Dagvin Anderson, Joint Task Force – Quartz commander. “We will continue to maintain strong force protection and strike those who seek to harm us or our partners.”
At this time the command assesses no civilians were injured or killed in these strikes.
U.S. Africa Command remains committed to working with East African countries to include building and maintaining regional security and placing pressure on al-Shabaab in order to advance mutual interests. U.S. Africa Command will continue to work with international and African partners to ensure long-term security in Somalia to the Federal Government of Somalia and its Member States.
The mission strike video can be found at: https://go.usa.gov/xAcKV